Local Democrats asked questions of write-in Congressional candidate Antonio Blue while hammering a representative of his opponent Congressman Larry Kissell on Thursday.
Blue first told the party members a little bit about himself. He is the mayor of Dobbins Heights in Richmond County and a 24-year veteran of the U.S. Army. He was a drill sergeant and worked in electrical maintenance in his time in the service.
“I’m just a country boy,” he said, and a graduate of Richmond Senior High School.
He also gave his stance on a few of the issues, saying that he thought it was important to defend the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), improve education and develop more job opportunities.
Jerry Hall, a representative of Kissell, spoke about the need for Democrats to unite behind Kissell.
“There is so much at stake,” he said. “Just be careful.”
Kissell, already in a precarious position due to redistricting in 2010, now faces a divided party after the 8th District Black Caucus endorsed Blue as a write-in candidate.
Democrats at the meeting criticized Kissell for refusing to endorse President Barack Obama, saying he might not attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte and his vote against the PPACA. Hall said that Kissell voted against the bill because it would make cuts to Medicare but some of the Democrats disputed that. Hall said that politics can grow “convoluted” and described Kissell as a moderate.
Republicans were not spared at the meeting. Blue called the vote to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt June 28 by the House of Representatives “blatant racism.” He also condemned the outburst by South Carolina Representative Joe Wilson, exclaiming “You lie!” during Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress in 2009 as an example of disrespect of the president.